I'm writing about ways to obtain complete understanding, and that requires every possible perspective. I've got most of them covered, but I'm stuck on what I'm calling proximity... fairly certain it's not the right word for what I'm trying to convey. The concept I'm thinking of includes both distance and sides. Sides include in, out, right, left, above, below, etc., and distance only includes how far away. I believe proximity is more about how far away...but I'm looking for a term that considers sides too. Please keep in mind, this is not limited to physical perspective, it also includes temporal, mental and more. So sides also mean his, her, their, before, after, etc.

As you can see from these synonyms for proximity, proximity is not exactly what I mean: adjacency, closeness, contiguity, immediacy, nearness, propinquity, vicinity.

The term I'm looking for does not have to include nearby, but it does include a degree of that because you can't sense something that is too far away. On the outer edge of this term lies "access," so where this term leaves off, "no practical access" begins.

Here's how the word/term would be used in a sentence.
"To obtain a more complete understanding of what you are focused on, it's imperative that you include as many perspectives as possible including: accessibility, dependence and ______. Accessibility determines how complete your understanding is or can be, and dependence includes a spectrum of possibilities ranging from complete independence to total interdependence--it also includes degrees of perceptive subjectivity. ______ includes direction and distance apart from but considering access, since limited access also prevents complete ______." Keep in mind, this not only applies to physical space, it also includes all natural and supernatural spaces, including temporal, mental and relational.

On a more practical level, "____ is important because if you are only seeing it from the south, your perspective is limited, or if you are only seeing it from the post-modern age, you are not seeing it from the people who had to deal with it in the middle ages."

Here's more of the same for an additional example. "Experiences include _____ too, because the way you feel depends on how close you are to the situation, and what you can actually sense in the process, from your physical point of view to your attitude when you experienced it."

  • 1
    Something viewpoint?
    – Jim
    Commented Dec 28, 2021 at 21:58
  • So the concept you're talking about, it's a spatial relationship (but also allowed metaphorically)? By sides and also his hers after, what exactly is implied by these possessive pronouns that is similar to proximity? Also, how does 'access' fit in? Does this mean the opposite of 'closed off'? You need to give a sentence (even better a paragraph) where you have a blank for the word you want that is consistent with the context. You will probably want to add a lot more substantive adjectives to narrow down on the concept you want. Also, how does any of this relate to 'perspective' in the title?
    – Mitch
    Commented Dec 28, 2021 at 22:33
  • Can you give labels/examples of the other perspectives you've identified? Commented Dec 28, 2021 at 23:23
  • @Jim point of view came to mind, but that is too synonymous with perspective isn't it. I'm trying to break perspectives into unique elements, and viewpoint is at the core, not a specific element. Commented Dec 28, 2021 at 23:56
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    I don’t know how you can get any better than viewpoint to cover the position you are looking at something from that includes both physical and metaphorical interpretation. This reminds me of software architecture wherein the system is explained and analyzed using different viewpoints that are relevant to the stakeholders involved. A logical view, an implementation view, a physical/deployment view etc. The analysis is done by considering various quality attributes (“-ilities”: accessibility could be one) But I think these are getting muddled a bit in your breakdown. Hard to judge here
    – Jim
    Commented Dec 29, 2021 at 0:18

3 Answers 3


I believe that you want perspective in the blank, and that you need another word where you’ve used perspective. Perhaps:

To obtain a more complete understanding of what you are focused on, it’s imperative that you include as many measures as possible, including accessibility, dependence, and perspective.

perspective, n.

5. The appearance of viewed objects with regard to relative position, distance from the viewer, etc.
III. Extended uses.
9. a. The relation or proportion in which the parts of a subject are viewed by the mind; the aspect of a subject or matter, as perceived from a particular mental point of view. Now only: a particular attitude towards or way of regarding something; an individual point of view.

Source: Oxford English Dictionary (login required)

measure, n.

IV. A plan, a course of action.
19. A plan or course of action intended to attain some object; a suitable action.
a. In plural. Esp. in to take (also adopt, †follow, pursue) measures . . .

Source: Oxford English Dictionary (login required)


Have some fun with affinity, variables,facets and aspects. If they don't work exactly, then branch out some more with a thesaurus. I'm not going to give you definitions because the type of work you need to do now requires that you look at definitions, examples, and synonyms.


Viewpoint - thanks for all your help everyone, I'm answering my own question thanks to Dan's comment (user:17956).

Perspectives are both physical and mental, and physical is quite limited (e.g. "The appearance of viewed objects with regard to relative position, distance from the viewer, etc."). An economist's perspective is quite different from a consumer's, and that has nothing to do with physical positioning, and everything to do with unique mental points-of-view.

Viewpoint is a unique element because it's not the same thing as access, which includes obstructions, and it's also different from dependence, which includes causality. Each element can be measured I suppose, but they are not measures in the sense of a process or plan, like experience, investigate and reason. I'm looking for the parts of experience, investigations and reasoning, not the process.

I've got more work to do on this, but I believe viewpoint is the word/term I was looking for.

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